Tuesday, March 20, 2012

56 on 85

This past Saturday found me in my home town of Greeley where we were spending the weekend with my parents. Though I was away from home, training had to go on. So I set off just before noon on a 56 mile out and back route that would have me rolling up US 85 through a series of small towns.

In the pre-interstate days, US 85 was the main north-south highway along the Front Range. It connected (and still does) North Dakota with Texas. Much of it has been absorbed into I-25 in Colorado, but this little stretch is much the same as it has been for decades.

My route began near my folks’ house which is almost adjacent to the Poudre River Trail. That took me east to Island Grove Regional Park and then from there it was a quick shot over to the highway. Then it was northward through the towns or Eaton, Ault, Pierce and Nunn. You can tell just by the names that these are small towns. They were spaced out about every five miles and I knew I was getting close to a town when I could see its largest structure: the grain elevator.

Much as I discovered in Maui, the ease with which I rode was due to a tail wind. A wind to which I was totally oblivious until it was time to turn around and head back south. It’s March and it’s Colorado (and the open plains of Northern Colorado at that) so I should have expected it. After months of doing primarily indoor rides, I got a reminder of how much a windy day can impact a ride.

By the time I made it back to the Poudre Trail, I was feeling the toll this ride was taking on my body. Since it is a relatively flat stretch, that meant I was pedaling most of the time with only a couple of places to cruise.

Since this is Eaton/Ault/Pierce/Nunn and not the Honoapiilani Highway, I’ve kept the below video short. There’s not too much of interest to see. Also of note, I think I’ve figured out a better placement for the camera so that the aero bars are out of view.

Tomorrow I'm off to Phoenix. I don't think I'll wear the GoPro on my runs or swim, but hopefully I'll return with some photographic evidence of my efforts.

Thanks for reading!

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